Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri

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Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#1 » by 1bigfan13 » Mon Jul 8, 2019 2:01 pm

In the aftermath of what's gone down the last few days I couldn't help but to reflect on how Toronto GM Ujiri pushed all his chips into the middle of the table when he thought his team had a legit shot to make the Finals, compared to how Presti got cold feet regarding Harden.

So many things would likely have been different that 2012-2013 year.

With Harden OKC likely still would have been the #1 seed and the prohibitive favorites to reach the Finals a second year in a row. And for those who would point out Westbrook getting injured....remember this. Houston was the 8th seed that year WITH Harden. Had OKC never sent Harden to Houston, the Rockets in all likelihood miss the playoffs which means Russ & Beverley never have their run in which took out Russ' knee.

Masai took full advantage of his short window of opportunity. Presti bitched out by trying to play the safe, long game.

I've hated the Harden trade since day 1. Mainly because even if Harden departed as a FA after the 2012-2013 season OKC still would have had a roster anchored by KD, Westbrook, and Ibaka going forward. So Presti had a lot more room for error than Masai and Toronto. That OKC trio sans Harden was still good enough to get to multiple WCFs.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti-Masai Ujiri 

Post#2 » by Thundershock88 » Mon Jul 8, 2019 2:03 pm

We know. It's time to move on.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti-Masai Ujiri 

Post#3 » by 1bigfan13 » Mon Jul 8, 2019 2:04 pm

Thundershock88 wrote:We know. It's time to move on.


It's hard to move on when you know your team butchered what should have been an easy decision. Especially since we now know the aftermath.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti-Masai Ujiri 

Post#4 » by Thundershock88 » Mon Jul 8, 2019 2:05 pm

1bigfan13 wrote:
Thundershock88 wrote:We know. It's time to move on.


It's hard to move on when you know your team butchered what should have been an easy decision. Especially since we now know the aftermath.


It has been almost a decade. It's time to move forward. Big reason I'm anxious to move on from Russ. Team still had multiple chances to get back and blew it.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#5 » by Patches Perry » Mon Jul 8, 2019 3:45 pm

Presti put a championship team on the court 2012-2016 and due to injuries and players coming up short, they didn't get it done. The GM can do a lot, but getting on the court and actually making the plays isn't one of them. The players have to bring it home.

Yes, the Harden trade was a mistake, but I can't understand the hyper focus on it, especially 7 years later. It didn't have nearly the impact that injuries did (2013 and 2015 specifically).
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#6 » by Old Man Game » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:18 am

Hindsight is 20/20. I'm sure if he had a time machine he'd do it differently.

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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#7 » by Kizz Fastfists » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:37 am

Should Presti have waited and done a S&T the following season if he was going to move Harden? I won't argue against that thought process and agreed with the theory at the time. The return would have been less at that point, but it still would have been a return. Give Harden his max extension then execute a trade the next off-season of either Russ or Harden. Again, something discussed at the time that we could all see the benefits of doing.

The return for Harden was good enough the trade made sense. The part that made no sense was letting K-Mart walk the next season. Losing that scoring punch off the bench that Presti was never able to replace. Instead he then wasted assets on Waiters, Kanter and others trying to replace K-Mart who was pretty much the perfect 6th man for OKC.

I am not going to say trading Harden was a "mistake". I will say the timing was sub-optimal. I will say that follow up moves from that were wrong and most people knew it when they were happening. The Harden trade started a chain reaction, but it didn't have to. OKC ownership was unwilling to pay the tax at that point. Presti felt his return would be better then while a team could give Harden a 5 year max then trying to S&T him the next off-season or extend him with a max and then explore trades the following off-season. The real flaw was Presti not valuing K-Mart's shooting enough to keep him and thinking Lamb could magically become the 40% 3pt shooter to replace him.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#8 » by CROklahoma » Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:03 am

Everybody makes mistakes, just the way it goes.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#9 » by Drygon » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:07 pm

Sam Presti deserves no criticism for James Harden trade, it was 100% fault on OKC's owners. They refused to go 4 millon dollars over the cap in order to keep to keep Harden.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#10 » by slick_watts » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:12 pm

Drygon wrote:Sam Presti deserves no criticism for James Harden trade, it was 100% fault on OKC's owners. They refused to go 4 millon dollars over the cap in order to keep to keep Harden.


it's fun to create your own version of history.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#11 » by Drygon » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:19 pm

slick_watts wrote:
Drygon wrote:Sam Presti deserves no criticism for James Harden trade, it was 100% fault on OKC's owners. They refused to go 4 millon dollars over the cap in order to keep to keep Harden.


it's fun to create your own version of history.


Keep living in your denial lol.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#12 » by jake_swivel » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:46 pm

It’s impossible to evaluate Presti as a GM without knowing whether the harden trade was a management directive. It was definitely the turning point, and if he was ordered to make the move, it would make a lot of sense to me. It feels out of character for him.

What I know, is that the next few years is going to be super exciting. Any day of the week is going to have the potential for a blockbuster trade. The thunder went from a 3-8 seed for the next few years to a team that factors into pretty much any move made in the league for the next 5 years. Them and New Orleans are going to be so fun to follow.

The actual wins/losses are going to be challenging to take, but the possibilities are pretty much infinite. As a fan, especially one that reads realgm, that kinda feels like Christmas morning around every corner. Just have to pick the right presents.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#13 » by Osirus89 » Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:39 am

So is Presti the anti-Masai in regards to not being able to hit on non-lottery picks or is Presti the anti-Masai in regard to him believing that Dion waiters, Kyle Singler, Caron Butler, and Derek Fisher among others were worthwhile players for a team competing for titles with Russ/KD? Or is he the anti-Masai because he holds on to coaches that won't get the job done instead of firing them like Masai did?

Which context are you referring to? Oh .. the Harden trade? Yes, Option D. Carry on then.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#14 » by DoItALL9 » Wed Jul 17, 2019 7:33 pm

Drygon wrote:
slick_watts wrote:
Drygon wrote:Sam Presti deserves no criticism for James Harden trade, it was 100% fault on OKC's owners. They refused to go 4 millon dollars over the cap in order to keep to keep Harden.


it's fun to create your own version of history.


Keep living in your denial lol.
So you think trading Harden is 100% on Sam Presti and not a tax issue directed by ownership?

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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#15 » by slick_watts » Wed Jul 17, 2019 7:38 pm

DoItALL9 wrote:
Drygon wrote:
slick_watts wrote:
it's fun to create your own version of history.


Keep living in your denial lol.
So you think trading Harden is 100% on Sam Presti and not a tax issue directed by ownership?

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the thunder just had a $70 million tax bill last season. there were money concerns at the time-- this was after all before the new tv deal and cap spike, but sam presti was not directed by ownership to let james harden go over $5 million per season as a principle of tax evasion. that's ridiculous. okc probably has the least meddlesome ownership in the entire nba.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#16 » by DoItALL9 » Wed Jul 17, 2019 7:45 pm

1bigfan13 wrote:In the aftermath of what's gone down the last few days I couldn't help but to reflect on how Toronto GM Ujiri pushed all his chips into the middle of the table when he thought his team had a legit shot to make the Finals, compared to how Presti got cold feet regarding Harden.

So many things would likely have been different that 2012-2013 year.

With Harden OKC likely still would have been the #1 seed and the prohibitive favorites to reach the Finals a second year in a row. And for those who would point out Westbrook getting injured....remember this. Houston was the 8th seed that year WITH Harden. Had OKC never sent Harden to Houston, the Rockets in all likelihood miss the playoffs which means Russ & Beverley never have their run in which took out Russ' knee.

Masai took full advantage of his short window of opportunity. Presti bitched out by trying to play the safe, long game.

I've hated the Harden trade since day 1. Mainly because even if Harden departed as a FA after the 2012-2013 season OKC still would have had a roster anchored by KD, Westbrook, and Ibaka going forward. So Presti had a lot more room for error than Masai and Toronto. That OKC trio sans Harden was still good enough to get to multiple WCFs.
I think your points are very valid. In 2012, OKC turned the corner vs the Spurs. The Spurs couldn't compete with them anymore. Imo, if OKC resigns Harden the Spurs don't make the 2013 or 2014 Finals. OKC defeats them both years. Also, with Harden, OKC wouldn't've missed the playoffs in 2015 and it's possible we see an MVP Harden earlier because he would've been the leader because the amount of time KD & RW were out that year.

Sadly, as a basketball fan in general, from 2015-2019 we missed what should've been one of the best Western Conference rivalries ever in OKC vs GSW.

(Honestly, redoing history, Dallas should've brought back their 2011 title team. Dallas vs OKC likely could've been a good rivalry thru ~2013 or 2014.)

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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#17 » by spearsy23 » Thu Jul 18, 2019 3:36 am

Did anybody else know that OKC had harden, Durant, and Westbrook on the same team?
“If you're getting stops and you're making threes and the other team's not scoring, that's when you're going to see a huge point difference there,” coach Billy Donovan said.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#18 » by Kizz Fastfists » Thu Jul 18, 2019 3:54 am

spearsy23 wrote:Did anybody else know that OKC had harden, Durant, and Westbrook on the same team?


That is news to me. I am not sure I can accept that reality. If that were the case OKC would have surely won at least one championship.

I just know they currently have the two best players from a team that took GS to 6 games in the playoffs and CP3. If they don't get rid of some players they might screw up and win more playoff games this year than the last 3 years combined.
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#19 » by BigRedDog » Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:03 pm

it never made sense why they didnt keep harden and just trade westbrook after harden emerged as the alpha on that team that year
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Re: Sam Presti is the anti Masai Ujiri 

Post#20 » by spearsy23 » Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:08 am

BigRedDog wrote:it never made sense why they didnt keep harden and just trade westbrook after harden emerged as the alpha on that team that year

Probably because that literally never happened.
“If you're getting stops and you're making threes and the other team's not scoring, that's when you're going to see a huge point difference there,” coach Billy Donovan said.

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